The Idea of You Author Slams "Frustrating" Harry Styles And Hayes Comparisons

8 May 2024, 17:13

The Idea of You Author Slams "Frustrating" Harry Styles And Hayes Comparisons
The Idea of You Author Slams "Frustrating" Harry Styles And Hayes Comparisons. Picture: Prime Video, Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue
Sam  Prance

By Sam Prance

Hayes Campbell was actually inspired by an amalgamation of people.

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The Idea of You author Robinne Lee has reacted to fans comparing Hayes Campbell to Harry Styles and called it "reductive".

If you've watched The Idea of You on Prime Video, you'd be forgiven for thinking that Hayes Campbell was inspired by Harry Styles. Like Harry, Hayes is British, he's the star of the world's biggest boyband and he makes headlines for dating older women. On top of that, the music in the film was written by the same people who wrote One Direction's music.

Now, the author behind the original The Idea of You book has revealed how she feels about the Hayes/Harry comparisons.

Nicholas Galitzine and Anne Hathaway in The Idea of You
Nicholas Galitzine and Anne Hathaway in The Idea of You. Picture: Alamy

Speaking to The Independent about people always associating her book with Harry, Robinne said: "It’s very frustrating".

She then admitted: "In the beginning I thought it was interesting, but it’s taken on a life of its own. I’m like, come on guys! What happened to the 22 other men I used to make this character? It feels very reductive."

Robinne made similar points to Vogue in 2020. She said: "This was never supposed to be a book about Harry Styles. It was supposed to be a story about a woman approaching 40 and reclaiming her sexuality and rediscovering herself, just at the point that society traditionally writes women off as desirable and viable and whole."

As for if Harry inspired the novel at all, Robinne replied: "Inspired is a strong word." She then revealed that he's actually an amalgamation of multiple people: "I made him into my dream guy, like Prince Harry, meets Harry Styles".

Robinne's exes, her husband and Eddie Redmayne also inspired the character.

Watch The Idea of You trailer

The Harry Styles comparisons first came to prominence when Robbine told blogger Deborah Kalb that she came up with the idea for the story when she "was up late surfing music videos on YouTube" and "came across the face" of a boyband singer and became transfixed.

Robinne explained: "I spent a good hour or so Googling and trying to figure out who this kid was. In doing so I discovered that he often dated older women, and so the seed was planted."

Robinne didn't specify who the singer was but people assumed she was referring to Harry.

What do you think? Is Hayes similar to Harry or not?

Read more about The Idea of You here:

WATCH: Nicholas Galitzine Paints The Idea Of You's Hayes Campbell

Nicholas Galitzine Paints A Portrait While Answering Chaotic Questions | The Idea of You

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